Revealed: the millionaires hoarding UK fishing rights


More than a quarter of the United Kingdom’s fishing quota is in the hands of a tiny group of the country’s wealthiest families, an Unearthed investigation has found.

Just five families on the Sunday Times Rich List hold or control 29% of the UK’s fishing quota.

The finding comes from a new Unearthed investigation that traced the owners of more than 95% of UK quota holdings – including, for the first time, those of Scotland, the UK’s biggest fishing nation.

It reveals that more than two-thirds of the UK’s fishing quota is controlled by just 25 businesses – and more than half of those are linked to one of the biggest criminal overfishing scams ever to reach the British courts.

Meanwhile, in England nearly 80% of fishing quota is held by foreign owners or domestic Rich List families, and more than half of Northern Ireland’s quota is hoarded onto a single trawler.